2019 Valentine's, Education, Gift Guides, School, School Gifts, Tips and Tricks

5 DIY Valentine’s Gifts for the Classroom

Our youngest is 10 and even in 5th grade the kids still love the holiday gifts that arrive for celebrations. I showed up to the classroom on the last day before the Christmas holiday with donuts from the grocery bakery and you would have thought I brought a movie star with me!

“Whoa! Do we all get 1 whole donut?”

“Thank you so much!! The donuts are our favorite”

They were so excited I kind of felt guilty. Other kids brought in so many great sweets and treats and the kids were drooling over these donuts like it was all they needed. Then as they got their donut and the rest of the kids handed out there items, there was another popular treat.

The only handmade item (the rest were typical store bought cookies and cupcakes) was a boys homemade cookie treats and the kids began admiring those. They weren’t store bought and they were unique so the kids were intrigued. Even at grade 5, the kids still appreciate the effort and uniqueness of DIY class gifts.

So, I have not totally made up my mind of what to send with Anthony for Valentine’s Day but here are my favorite DIY Valentine’s Gifts for the Classroom right now I have saved into my bookmarked pages.

1. Fruit Snacks Valenties

I found these on Domestic Executive Online and in her Free Valentine’s Printable post she has this fun idea for fruit snacks. Cheap and easy!

2. Goldfish “Hooked On You” Valentines

This is so fun and also very inexpensive. All you need is some goldfish crackers, baggies and the instructions from Frugal Coupon Living’s post for these fun free Valentine’s printables!

3. Capri Sun with Cupid’s Arrow Messages

Like I mentioned above, I attended my son’s 5th grade class holiday party and with 30 kids who brought treats, no one brought drinks and us adults were running for water for very sugar-high thirsty kids! This is a fun idea I found from Joy’s Life for this fun drink Valentines printable.

4. Crayon DIY Printable

Boxes of crayons are a great non-food gift for the kids of all ages. I found this free crayon printable for this Color My World Valentine from Dreaming in DIY.

5. Peel the Love Valentine

Want to bring the healthier treat? This is a fun free Valentine’s printable from Happy Money Saver for cuties oranges

Gift Guides, Kids, School, School Gifts

Easy Kids Birthday Favors – Free Printable Tags

I am an #HPSmartMom and receive product from HP periodically

Easy Kids Birthday Favors - Free Printable Tags

 Our youngest will be 9 in a few weeks and I just booked his party at and now have Invitations, party favors and classroom favors to prepare. The party is for 10 cards and his class favors are for 24. Because a student in his class severe allergies she does not allow food gifts so kids typically bring in trinkets to hand out. I found some water bottles for under $1 and am doing those, but I needed tags to print and attach.

HP Gift Tag

This is what I use my HP Print and Photo Projects download for. I have it installed on my Mac and I just open it, choose a project and design and print. I found this tablet, changed the text and had them printed in under 10 minutes. It took me longer to cut all the string for tying these onto the bottles.

Birthday favor tags

I have an HP Instant Ink eligible printer. The HP Envy 7640 costs under $130 and can print, fax, scan, copy and do photo wirelessly. I am so excited about the wireless feature on this printer because I can sit on the couch and while reading emails or messages, I save it as a document right on my phone then open my HP All-in-One Remote app and hit print! My copy is sitting on my printer and I never left the couch or promised myself I will print out later only to forget.
Why do I need an HP Instant Ink compatible printer? Because it works with my ink cartridge to send a message to HP when I am low and I have ink at my door within days and before I run out! How simple is that?

Making gift tags

If you can’t find water bottles, try attaching tags to bulk and inexpensive favors like keychains. Until I stumbled across these bottles, I almost used some Emoji keychains I found for under $15 that was enough for his entire class.

gift tag printable

I printed 24 copies, cut them each out and cut 25 strands of ribbon. Used a hole punch so I can insert the ribbon and tie to each bottle. The great thing is that these bottles were under $1 and were BPA free plastic.


Having my HP Envy printer and access to a Project Download that anyone can access makes these party set up projects so easy. See all of the projects you can do with HP Printables.


water bottle favors

Food, Gift Guides, School, School Gifts

Many uses for your iCoffee brewer

This is a promotional post

By now, the majority of us have coffee brewers. I had a brand I used until I discovered this iCoffee Opus Brewer. We love this brewer and I wish I had owned one sooner. I spent too many years tasting coffee with a bit of bitterness and even grounds released into my cup of coffee. Now that I have this iCoffee Opus Brewer with the spin needle that spins as water enters the K-Cup and mixes the grounds as it releases into our cup, our coffee has never tasted so good. I am a picky coffee drinker and love robust flavors, my husband will take any blend of black coffee so he is not as appreciative as I am for flavor. He did not show much enthusiasm at first for the new machine until his first brew. It was well into the morning when he stated that he admits “That is one amazing brewer…I think my coffee tastes much better”. That is because in a recent study done by Ohio State University Sensory Science Group, it really does taste better compared to similar brands! It beat the other brand in taste, after taste and aroma. 
Not to mention it is a pretty sophisticated looking machine. This is such a great choice for any student you have sent off to college. You know you are in withdraws with them away and long to send a care package! Send them an iCoffee machine fit for their needs! You know that will make them smile during this new chapter in their lives. It is rated best and so is you your child!

The best part about coffee brewers like the ones from iCoffee is that you are not limited to making coffee with the unit. When you insert a pod, you are mixing flavors with water, but if you don’t insert a pod then you have instant hot water!
Just so you don’t say I skipped the obvious, your brewer was made to brew a good cup of coffee! Most grocers and retailers carry the K-Cup coffee cups meant to be used in the brewer in flavors and strengths you love.
Hot Cocoa
You can buy hot cocoa K-Cups for great tasting hot cocoa for you or the kids. You can also brew a glass without inserting any K-Cup so you just get hot water to mix with your favorite cocoa powder.
Soup & Oatmeals
My Mom is a teacher and she would keep a brewer in classroom and not only have coffee through her K-Cups she keeps in the room but had instant hot water for her soup cups or oatmeal packets for quick meals in the morning and afternoon when making it to the lounge did not fit her schedule.
There are tea varieties available in K-Cup, but if you have a favorite tea bag or blend in a canister you love, all you need is instant hot water from your brewer.
When we entertain, I always have my brewer out and filled with water. I will not only keep K-Cup coffees out, but will put out cocoa packets and tea bags for the variety that fits everyones beverage desires.
Head over to the iCoffee website and find a brewer right for you!
Education, Gift Guides, School, School Gifts

Free reading and math teaching tools

This is not a sponsored post. I was not compensated in any way

As a daughter of a school teacher, I am used to stopping as I come to education sites and pay attention to products I am emailed about that I send to my Mom as recommendations. My Mom had taught 3rd/4th grade for years and this year they redrew district boundaries and she took a second grade class at a school closer to her home. So, we have been on the hunt for second grade level decor for the classroom and learning tips. I was alerted by a PR company I have worked with about a site called Astute Hoot and sent this to my Mom!
Astute Hoot has teaching tools all themed around owl characters for reading and math strategies. It is founded in part by a second grade teacher for teachers. This was perfect for my Mom heading into the lower grade level for the first time. A few of the tools are free and can be used by the teachers and by students to take one common theme and apply it to different math levels and reading and writing strategies. These are great tools for the homeschool families as well!

The video below gives you the idea of how engaged the kids get using these tools with teacher!

There are products that are as low as $5 or even free and you will find many useful learning tools for not only reading and math, but also test prep, special education, behavior and holiday bundles. 
To get started, you can download for FREE the Top 10 Tools for Back to School HERE! In this free download, you get these sample files:
1. Beginning of the Year Checklist
2. Golden Keys to Success Responsibility Chart
3. Golden Keys to Success Parent Brochure
4. Routines, Procedures & Transitions: Walking in line
5. Icebreaker Activity: Top 10 About Me
6. Common Core Reading Strategies Poster
7. Behavior Reflection Think Sheet
8. First Day of School Lesson Plan
9. Social Story–Following Directions
10. Parent Welcome Letter sample

See all of the materials and learn more at http://astutehoot.com/